Marshall, a 36-year-old former NFL wide receiver, was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder (BPD) in 2011 during an outpatient program. BPD is characterized by disruptions of mood and behavior that, according to a psychiatrist POPSUGAR spoke to in a previous interview, "are generally triggered by external stresses, real or misperceived." Symptoms can include unstable self-image and relationships, impulsive behavior, and mood swings — and BPD can oftentimes coincide with other mental illnesses.
"I remember the doctors there gave me a pamphlet on BPD, explaining the signs and symptoms, and I started highlighting the things I had been feeling," Marshall wrote for The Players' Tribune six years later. "By the time I was done, the whole damn pamphlet was yellow." He discussed experiencing depression and going days without speaking to people.
Those three months in an outpatient program, Marshall said, changed his life. "I was able to get to the root of things that had been holding me back for years, and it allowed me to unlock my true potential," he explained. Being mentally tough and hiding emotions was ingrained in Marshall since he was a kid, but he wrote that, now, he realizes mental health is the exact opposite — you have to talk about it. So that's why he and his wife started Project 375, a foundation dedicated to advocacy.